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Boats lowered into Big Splash flume

Boats lowered into Big Splash flume

Rotorua, 14 December, 2011 – The first boats have been lowered into the Big Splash's flume at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua ready for the water to flow.

The six boats, each carrying up to eight passengers, will weave their way through the ecological evolution of New Zealand in the new ride, educating and entertaining riders along the way.

The boats will flow through the changing flora and fauna of New Zealand's landscape, from the days when dinosaurs, moa and the massive haast eagles roamed the land, through to the arrival of humans and the impact this evolution had on the delicate ecological balance of nature.

Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park, General Manager Michelle Caldwell says, "The nine-minute long ride is an journey through time that will feature an informative narrative, state-of-the-art animation that will bring to life dinosaurs, moa and the haast eagle, and an adrenalin boosting plunge at the end.

"The ride is designed to inform passengers, as well as entertain at the same time, and will be very interactive. It will make people sit up and take a reflective look about how precious our environment is and the wildlife that inhabits it, conservation is a key message."

Big Splash is a fitting addition to Rainbow Springs wildlife park, which has a strong conservation role as a tuatara breeder and New Zealand's largest hatcher of brown kiwi chicks.

The $10 million plus dollar ride is nearing completion and is on target for opening in early January.

"The 431 metre flume has been laid and a life-size dinosaur will be choppered into place next week, this will be followed by extensive testing by the Swedish design company, Intamin before Big Splash opens to the public next month," Ms Caldwell says.

Big Splash is expected to be a major draw-card for Rotorua, giving international and local visitors an exciting insight into New Zealand history and culture and the development is the largest single investment made in the park since it opened in 1932.

Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park is an icon of New Zealand tourism and has been open since 1932. Spread over 22 acres of Rotorua parkland, Rainbow Springs is a conservation and breeding haven for endangered New Zealand species such as Kiwi and tuatara. The park offers a unique wildlife experience for visitors, who can see animals in their natural environment, both during the day and night. Features of the award winning tourist attraction include New Zealand’s first ‘open to view’ Kiwi hatchery, and a range of wildlife including trout, tuatara and native birds.

ENDS

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